Did Conservatism, Inc. die of COVID-19?
I’m not the only one calling for a wellness check.
This slew of recent polls has me wondering how far the demographic base of the whole racket has slipped since suburban voters have migrated to the Democrats over the past five election cycles. You’ve got to wonder how long this can possibly continue when these people are dying out and all the crippling social problems that flow from modernism and neoliberalism become too large to ignore.
Pedro Gonzalez (he/him), one of our Latinx allys, has been nailing it lately.
“The “distinguishing quality of Anglo-Saxon politics,” James Burnham wrote, “has always been hypocrisy, and hypocrisy must always be at pains to shy away from the truth.”
Burnham’s words are especially true of Conservatism, Inc., as it is no longer clear, at this point, what is being conserved beyond sinecures and special interests. Conservative think tanks are illustrative of this problem. …
The great irony of American conservatism is that it paves the way for its own demise by holding untenable, hypocritical positions. It preaches bootstraps for everyday Americans while taking money from bailouts. Conservatism decries socialism for the poor and middle even as it celebrates it for the rich. The family only matters as a consolidated unit of production and consumption. Conservatism, Inc. is guilty of virtually every evil of which it accuses the Left—but unlike the Left, against all social, moral, religious, and ethical teachings, it has declared greed is good.
Many of contemporary conservatism’s ideas are fundamentally indistinguishable from those of “liberals”—but unlike liberals who have the good sense to lie about their avarice, conservatives proclaim the supremacy of self-interest, of anti-social, atomizing individualism even as it facilitates the consolidation of control over our lives by a collective of managerial elites. It’s past time to pull down the pillars of this defeated and historically irrelevant movement and build something new.”
“The debate over raising the federal minimum wage has elicited weeping and gnashing of teeth on both sides, but the policy itself is less important than what the wailing on the Right has revealed.
“Simply put, the minimum wage stops labor markets from operating effectively,” the editors of National Review write. We must, they insist, heed the “basic economic principles” conservatism has declared universally valid.
The religion of the dollar established by conservatism holds that tax cuts and deregulation are the proper means by which wages can and should increase. Slash those, and incomes will rise as sure as the sun. But a new study from the London School of Economics shows that a half-century of praying at the free-market altar has benefitted very few. …
Contemporary conservatism has, in fact, facilitated the corporate consolidation of the economy by entities that are actively hostile to the small businesses they hold up as props. If it stood for anything other than avarice, it would champion private-sector unionization as a mechanism for raising wages through bargaining and promote penalties for globalization, which is harmful both to the mom-and-pop shops and to workers.
Instead, conservatism attacks labor, celebrates globalization, and demands Americans live by the lie that the system is anything but stacked against them.
Conservatism has conserved nothing because it ultimately stands for nothing other than greed.”
The Federalist sounds sharper than usual.
“So what’s all behind this? After four years of yelling “MAGA!” while pushing his own classic, corporate Republican policies, McConnell had hoped to rid himself and his conference of the conservative populist nationalism the former president had championed and go back to the way things were. He wants a return to promising to tackle illegal immigration before winking at corporate America that nothing will change. He wants to raise money on fighting the abortion of our infants while comfortably lifting nary a finger. He wants to shrug and change the subject when asked about men dominating women’s sports and using women’s bathrooms. He wants fewer taxes and more wars. Hell, he wants someone to blame for the Republican losses in the Georgia special election, and with them the loss of his seat at the head of the Senate.
Instead, his push to impeach ended with rebuke from his own conference. Angry and embarrassed, he blamed his own colleagues as well as the former president, performing a 20-minute attack ad for the left to use on Republicans for the next election cycle and beyond. …”
If you can believe it, Lindsey Graham is calling Mitch McConnell an albatross on the GOP.